By, Ashley Martens
November is National Gratitude Month, and with the Thanksgiving holiday right around the corner, many of us may be thinking about gratitude and what we are all thankful for this year. If you are wondering how you can incorporate more gratitude in your life every day of the year, here are six simple steps and tips on how you can be more grateful every day, no matter what time of the year.
Why It Is Important to Practice Gratitude
Practicing gratitude for the present moment can add some much-needed balance to our lives. As a powerful form of appreciation of what is in the here and now, gratitude can help us feel happier, get grounded in the moment, and make us stronger emotionally, among other benefits. If you are wondering how you can start a gratitude practice, here are some easy ideas.
6 Tips for Practicing Gratitude
#1 Create an Atmosphere of Gratitude
At Thanksgiving, many families and friends share what they are grateful for, but who says you only have to do that on Thanksgiving Day? Instead, incorporate this gratitude ritual every day of the year, no matter what the day of the week or holiday.
If you share a family meal every night or even once a week for a family Sunday dinner, go around the table and share what you are grateful for that day or that week. Perhaps you can even host a once-a-month meal prep party with family and friends and discuss what you are grateful for that month.
#2 Express Gratitude for Yourself Through Nutrition
An easy and delicious way to show gratitude is to express gratitude for yourself through your everyday food choices. By being mindful of what you put into your body, you show gratitude by fueling your body with nutritious food options.
Options include ethically raised eggs and meat sources like grass-fed beef and pasture-raised poultry, fresh fruits and vegetables from the local farmers’ market, and wild-caught fish. Selecting the highest quality foods and supplements is one easy way to show gratitude for yourself and your health and fuel your body with beneficial nutrients.
#3 Go for a Gratitude Walk
Going for a walk is a great way to get outside to breathe in some fresh air and enjoy some daily movement. As you go for a walk, focus on each step you take, and with each step, think of something you are grateful for.
It can be something small like having the health to go on a walk, or it can be something big like seeing all of your family and friends for the upcoming holiday season, even if that means holiday travel. Whether you walk in nature, explore a nearby community trail, or take a casual stroll around your local neighborhood, going for a gratitude walk can be done almost anywhere.
#4 Live Mindfully
Living mindfully may sound simple, but it can be challenging at times, especially if you always find yourself thinking about what is next in the future. Instead, focus on the present moment and take notice of what you are grateful for in that very moment. Maybe it is having a home to live in, a warm meal to eat, or maybe it is even having a job to go to every morning. Try not to take the smallest things in life for granted and show them some daily gratitude instead.
Many times, when we think of what we are grateful for, we do not always voice it, especially when it comes to people. An incredibly thoughtful way to start a gratitude practice is by voicing it.
Instead of thinking how nice it is that your parents always call you once a week to check in, take the time to call them and express to them how grateful you are to have them in your life. Text a friend who is always there for you, or leave a note for your kids, roommate, or significant other and stick it somewhere they will find it as a nice little surprise to find during their day.
After all, everyone likes to feel appreciated, so take an extra minute and express your gratitude towards the ones you love most in life.
#6 Start Small
Gratitude is a habit that develops strength and grows over time and with practice, so start small. Grab a journal or notebook and make a list of one thing you are grateful for every day. If you do not already have an established journal practice, start one or begin listing your points of appreciation mentally, which is just as good as writing them down.
Be Grateful and Give Thanks
Although the month of November and the Thanksgiving holiday are all about gratitude, find a way to incorporate the practice of gratitude practice every day of the year and notice the differences you experience in your life. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!
Meet The Author
Ashley Martens is a Health and Wellness Writer based in Chicago, IL. With a background in digital marketing coupled with her knowledge of general nutrition and a lifelong passion for all things health, wellness, fitness and nutrition, Ashley offers a healthy alternative to traditional writing. You can learn more about Ashley and her writing on her portfolio.